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Hi everyone! Announcing EdTech Camp 2017! The call for presenters is now open. It's going to be an inspiring day!

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This year's Ed Tech Camp - Call for Presenters is now open! Ed Tech will be October 15th, at Richmond Green. The registration, for campers, opens next Monday (on Connect to Learn), but if you're interested in presenting, please see below.


Happy September! Hopefully you’re easing back into the school year, after a relaxing summer.

We are excited to announce that YRDSB will be hosting another Ed Tech Camp in October, at Richmond Green. In planning for the day, we are now seeking presenters for the day. We encourage topics from presenters about anything that they are passionate about, that engages students or creates authentic learning opportunities and truly reflects the ideas of Modern Learning.

The format for the day will be the same as it was last year, namely a keynote to start the day, and three one-hour breakout blocks. To reflect the needs of our learners, we’re asking that presentations either be a 1 hour Inspire Session, or a 2 hour Create and Collaborate Session, and if you’d like, please feel free to offer to present more than once. The 1 hour inspire sessions are meant to share an idea/passion and spark a fire, whereas the 2 hour sessions should give participants the hands-on guided learning opportunity to create something that they could take back to their classes on Monday morning. That doesn’t mean that their can’t be hands on during a 1 hour block, but you may find it difficult to schedule.

We had really great feedback from last year’s conference, and now how effective learning from each other is. Over 96% of the participants found the day relevant and an effective use of their time, and that 96% said that they would come back. It’s important to note that you might not think that you’re doing anything special in your classroom, but you may be surprised.

One of the pieces of feedback that we’ve had, and are working with, is making sure that we have a common understanding of the different “levels” of workshops. It says this on the Call for Presenters form, but just to reiterate:

· Beginner workshops are for people who are just starting their journey with GAPPS. In theory, these workshops would cover topics such as “Accessing your Google Drive”, “Navigating Google Documents” and “Working with forms”. The expectation here is that the attendee has never used the tool they’re going to be learning about before.
· Intermediate workshops are for people who have used the tool before, are generally pretty comfortable with said tool, and are now looking for ways to apply the tool to their classroom practice. Suggested topics could include “Using the Feedback features of Google Docs to support learning” or “Self Assessing your progress with self-marking Google Forms”.
· Advanced workshops would be workshops tailored to learners who are already using the tool and looking to go deeper. Think about Add-ons and extensions for this type of workshop (i.e. “Automating your marking load with Flubaroo” or “Easy Google Docs management using Doctopus”

When proposing your workshop, please keep these in mind.

Also, a note about red tools… we realize, understand and appreciate the value of some “red” tools in your practice and encourage you to share the awesomeness that you’ve been doing with them. However, we need to stress to all participants that using these tools does require specific parent permission, as to the tool, when you’ll be using it, how and why you’ll be using it, as well as where the data will be stored. We are really trying to drive home the message that teachers are free to use whichever tools they find help support their practice AS LONG AS THEY HAVE school administration and parent permission.

The Call for Presenters closes on the 23rd of September. We will then vet, and be in touch with confirmed presenters hopefully on the 27th or 28th of September. Past practice dictates that when we have numerous proposals on the same topic, that the proposal received first is the one that is selected, so hence why we wanted to share this with you now. We are hoping, that by moving to Richmond Green, that we will be able to offer even more workshops, and won’t be confined by space.

Actual registration for the day will open in a couple of weeks. The information about the day, for attendees will be in this week’s Weekly Memo.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact myself directly. If you’re thinking of presenting again this year, and looking for the link, you’ll find it below.

Thanks for your consideration.


Good luck to all attending YRDSB EdTech Camp tomorrow. May each session blow your mind more then the last! They have never stopped doing that for me!

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Anyone else getting excited about EdTech Camp 2016? It's one week away and it would be great if we could get all presenters to tease out their session so attendees will be able to start thinking about the sessions they'd like to attend.

I'll start :)

Have you ever been to an Escape room? Are you a fan of the National Treasure or Da Vinci Code films? Were you a detective in a past life? Are you searching for innovative and engaging ways to help your students solve problems, collaborate and just make your classroom come alive? If you answered yes to any of the above, this is the session for you! Breakout EDU creates ultra-engaging learning games for people of all ages. Games (Breakouts) teach teamwork, problem solving, critical thinking, and troubleshooting by presenting participants with challenges that ignite their natural drive to problem-solve. Participants will have 45 minutes to complete a series of challenges, reveal clues, and unlock mysteries in order to win the game. This session is limited to the first 20 people.

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Registration for this year's Ed Tech Camp is now open on Connect to Learn, through the Board Wide Web.  Additional information for this year's event can be found by visiting

Hello all, I've heard registration for EdTech Camp is open but when I go to the site it looks like it hasn't been updated for 2016.  Is there a new link somewhere?

Is there an EdTech Camp planned for spring of 2016? If so, I have an idea for a session.

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By now, you’ve probably heard about Expeditions, Google’s immersive virtual reality platform that helps teachers bring their lessons to life. What you might not know is that, soon, Expeditions could be visiting your school!

To help launch this exciting new classroom addition, Expeditions teams will visit select schools around the world, starting with the United States, Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Brazil, Denmark, Signapore, and Canada.

The York Region District School Board has been selected as one of the first school Boards in Canada to participate in this exciting opportunity! Each Expedition team will bring a complete Expeditions kit with everything the teachers need to take their students on journeys to anywhere.

It would be great for your school to be one of the first schools Expeditions visits. If this sounds like something your school, teachers, and students would be interested in, please visit our Pioneer
 Program site to learn more and register. 

Sign up soon, because while we’d like to visit as many schools as possible, spaces are limited!
The Google Expeditions Team​

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I just got an email message about the newly updated Explore Learning Gizmos site. They have a lot of great math and science simulations. Not all of them are HTML5 ready yet, but the link below will take you to a list of Gizmos that are ready (and can run on Chromebooks). Apparently they hope to have them all converted by the end of the year. 

Gizmos are an OSAPAC (i.e. green) tool, so you can set up your class list and assign simulations and collect assessment data. To register expand the description on the BWW Online Resources page ( by clicking on the "+" below the Gizmos button.

There are some online tutorials coming up to walk people through the new Gizmos site. You can sign up for them using the links below.

• August 19, 6:00 pm -
• August 20, 7:00 pm -
• August 25, 7:00 pm -
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